P0017 Code – Meaning, Symptoms, Causes, & Fixes

The optimal functioning of an engine relies heavily on the precise coordination of its camshaft and crankshaft. Learn the P0017 code meaning, causes, and symptoms.

P0017 code

Modern vehicles are equipped with advanced features like crankshaft position sensor (CKP sensor) and camshaft position sensor (CMP sensor). These sensors accurately monitor the current angles and performance of the crankshaft and camshaft, respectively. The synchronized operation of these two components is crucial for achieving peak engine performance.

The engine control module (ECM) monitors the performance of the crankshaft and camshaft sensors. When there is an issue in the synchronization of the camshaft and camshaft, the ECM activates the diagnostic trouble code (DTC) P0017.

This article provides an in-depth exploration of the significance of the P0017 code, its potential causes, observable symptoms, and recommended solutions.

P0017 Code Definition

The code P0017 stands for “Crankshaft Position – Camshaft Position Correlation (Bank 1 Sensor B).”

Bank 1 refers to the side of the engine that contains cylinder 1, and Sensor B represents the exhaust camshaft.

What does the P0017 Code Mean?

The P0017 trouble code is an indication that your vehicle’s ECM detects a discrepancy between the signals received from the crankshaft position sensor and the camshaft position sensor for the exhaust camshaft of bank 1.

crankshaft position - camshaft position correlation (bank 1 sensor b) location

The camshaft is responsible for controlling the opening and closing of valves, allowing the fuel-air mixture to enter the combustion chamber. Subsequently, a spark ignites this mixture, leading to combustion, which powers the vehicle.

On the other hand, the crankshaft converts the force generated by the engine cylinder into rotational motion, which propels the wheels.

For seamless engine operation, the camshaft sensor and the crankshaft sensor need to work in harmony. They help the ECM to manage critical features such as fuel delivery rate, spark timing, and overall timing coordination. When these sensors fall out of sync, the engine’s functionality is compromised, resulting in the activation of the P0017 error code.

The P0017 code issue is commonly observed in certain vehicle brands, including Mercedes Benz, GMC, Buick, Cadillac, and Chevrolet. It’s also possible to encounter related error codes such as P0010, P0016, P0018, and P0009 alongside the P0017 trouble code.

Symptoms of P0017 Trouble Code

The illuminated check engine light is one of the clear symptoms of the P0017 code. However, it may also cause some other issues, such as rough idle, engine stalling, or reduced engine power.

The following are the most common symptoms of the P0017 code:

  • Check Engine Light
  • Reduced engine power
  • Hard starting conditions
  • Engine won’t start at all
  • Rough idle
  • Stalling
  • A reduction in fuel economy
  • Poor acceleration

Causes of the P0017 Code

  • An issue with the timing belt
  • Defective variable valve timing (VVT) actuator 
  • The bad camshaft position sensor
  • Dirty engine oil
  • A bad crankshaft position sensor
  • Bad oil control valve
  • Low oil levels
  • An issue with the crankshaft and camshaft reluctor wheels
  • Faulty oil pump
  • Clogged oil filter
  • Damaged wires connected to the camshaft sensor or crankshaft sensor

How to Diagnose the P0017 Code?

Follow the below-given steps to diagnose and fix the P0017 code:

  • Utilize a scan tool (i.e., OBD-II scanner) to read the stored trouble codes within the ECM. Frequently encountered codes accompanying P0017 include P0009, P0015, P0016, and P0018. The presence of these codes can aid in pinpointing the issue.
  • Clear the ECM memory and take your vehicle for a test drive. If the P0017 code triggers again, it indicates that the issue is still there.
  • Examine the engine oil level, ensuring its cleanliness and absence of contamination. Swiftly replace the oil if it’s deemed impure.
  • Check the timing belt for any potential faults or anomalies.
  • Conduct a visual assessment of the physical condition of the crank sensor, identifying any visible irregularities.
  • Thoroughly examine the wires and connectors connected to the camshaft and crankshaft sensors.
  • Check the performance of the crankshaft position sensor.
  • Employ a multimeter or oscilloscope to test the functionality of the camshaft position sensor. Verification of accurate signal transmission to the PCM is essential.
  • Examine the oil filter for any signs of damage or impairment.
  • Inspect the oil control valve for potential issues that might affect its performance.
  • Thoroughly examine the oil system for any blockages or operational malfunctions.
  • Verify the efficiency and currency of the ECM software to ensure optimal functionality.

Common P0017 Code Diagnostic Mistakes

  • Neglecting to examine other related error codes and underlying issues prior to initiating the diagnosis process.
  • Overlooking the recommended diagnostic steps.
  • Disregarding the initial visual assessment of wires and connectivity issues before considering replacements.
  • Failing to employ appropriate tools for precise assessment of malfunctioning parts.
  • Neglecting the crucial step of inspecting engine oil condition before considering the replacement of camshaft or crankshaft sensors.
  • Prematurely swapping out parts without conducting thorough and proper testing procedures.

How serious is the P0017 Code?

The P0017 code is a serious trouble code. It should not be taken lightly, as it signifies a significant problem. Ignoring this trouble code not only results in immediate performance concerns but can also escalate into more serious problems. This negligence might ultimately cause a complete engine breakdown. There’s an added risk of carbon accumulation within the engine, which can cause spark plugs to become fouled.

Furthermore, proper timing belt alignment is crucial to prevent any jumping. Should this alignment falter, it could trigger contact between pistons and valves, potentially causing severe engine damage. What might initially appear as a minor repair requirement could quickly evolve into a major engine overhaul.

What Repairs Can Fix the P0017 Code?

Before making any replacement, it is essential to diagnose the whole system properly. To fix the P0017 code, you need to replace or repair one or more of the following parts:

  • Reset the error codes and perform a test drive
  • Address the relevant codes
  • Clean the engine carbon from pistons and valves
  • Adding or changing the engine oil if needed
  • Repair or replace the faulty timing belt
  • Replace the faulty timing belt tensioner
  • Replace the bad crankshaft position sensor
  • Replace the faulty oil control valve
  • Replace the bad camshaft position sensor
  • Repair the damaged wires connected to the camshaft or crankshaft sensor

Fixing Cost of P0017 Code

You need to replace one or more of the below-given parts to fix the P0017 code:

Oil filter replacement$40 to $80
CMP actuator solenoid replacement$280 to $3,000
Oil control valve replacement$140 to $480
Crankshaft position sensor replacement$110 to $330
Timing belt replacement$160 to $380
Camshaft position sensor replacement$180 to $1,600
Wiring repair$40 to $560

FAQ Section

Can I drive with the P0017 code?

Yes, driving your vehicle with the P0017 code is possible, but it’s not advisable due to potential drivability complications. This code can lead to problematic conditions such as diminished engine power, sluggish acceleration, stalling, and even instances of the engine failing to start. Furthermore, postponing the resolution of the DTC P0017 issue may prompt the development of carbon deposits on valves and pistons, jeopardizing the integrity of your car’s spark plugs. Such a delay can also contribute to engine misfires, intensifying the overall negative impact on your vehicle’s performance.

What are the symptoms of P0017 Ford?

The illuminated check engine light is one of the clear symptoms of the P0017 code in your Ford car. However, it may also cause some other issues, such as rough idle, engine stalling, poor fuel economy, or reduced engine power.

Which is camshaft sensor B?

The camshaft position sensor monitors the rotational speed of the camshaft, enabling the vehicle’s computer to manage functions such as engine timing and fuel injection. Sensor B represents to the camshaft position sensor situated on the exhaust side of the cylinder head.

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